Dry Hopping in a bag or not?

I usually dry hop in a bag so most of the hop sediment stays in the bag and doesn’t end up in the finished product. Do you think that dry hopping in a bag limits how effective the dry hop is? I feel like since the hops can’t spread out there is less surface area in contact with the beer…


I’m not normally a hoppy beer maker; I do them only rarely. But I just recently made a batch where I tried the dry hops in a bag, and the results were good, but less than when I let the pellets go skinny dipping. I believe it would have worked better had I weighted the bag though; it just floated on top, and held all the hops there too.

Apologies for the wishy-washy reply.

I dry hop in a bag in my kegs. I weigh the bag down a little with a stainless steel utensil so it hangs about halfway into the beer and tie it off on the keg handle. Using unflavored dental floss, it’s thin enough to maintain a seal on the keg lid with no issues. I leave the hops in there until the keg is gone too, despite some people saying they give off a vegetal/grassy flavor after a while. I haven’t noticed any issues doing it this way.

I think it is well accepted that bags affect utilization. I don’t use them, so I cannot speak from experience. I do not use them for the reason you state. In fact, I’ve even taken to gently shaking carboy to move the dry hops around. Pro brewers use CO2 to accomplish the same.

Same process for me. I’ve heard you should increase hops by 10% if you bag them. I never have.

I don’t know where you heard this… :lol:

BTW zwiller, I’m gonna dry hop my beer this weekend and am going bagless. I will also be ‘recirculating’ them as well. But I’ve always done this.

I think it’s well accepted that bags affect IBUs…I don’t think they have much effect in dry hopping. At least not in my experience. Having dry hopped with and without bags, I’ve found no difference in hop character. Can you tell me a commercial brewer who uses CO2 to “rouse” dry hops? It’s something I’ve never encountered.

Speaking of hop bags, Sierra Nevada uses them. Here are dry hop bags for SN Celebration, one of my favorite beers. Each bag is for 400 bbl. (1200+ gal.). And the don’t rouse with CO2 or weight the bags. FWIW, I haven’t found any need to weight bags in a home situation, either.


Matt Cole does this over at Fatheads. If you have Steele’s IPA book the complete recipe is in the back for Headhunter IPA, which is an incredible beer. From memory, it’s says rouse dry hops with CO2 on days 2,6, and 8 or something like that. I’ve also heard of this technique used with other brewers too but it is conjecture and not proven.

Josh, plan to rack off yeast and dryhop this weekend too. :cheers:

I think Dark Horse even made a piece of equipment that recirulates the beer/hops while they dry hop.

To add on what I posted earlier, if I dry hop in the primary or a secondary vessel I do not do it in bags. I only do bags in the keg to keep the dip tube from getting clogged up.